November 7, 2011
From “Now What? Seven Differences between Truth and Error”
Chapter 4 The truth about one’s religion: the difference between display and depth.
Christianity became a religion when the world drove its people to believe in one. Christianity as we have known it is not a religion but the Way of Life or profoundly, a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. It is where Christians claim to follow Christ wholeheartedly without reserve. In a world, where tolerance is the key to many religions, Christianity is not tolerated by most of our society. Christianity has experience intense persecution and opposition for many years, on the local areas and the national levels of society. It is not “respected” because Christians follow the Christ, who was crucified.
Glenn M. Penner wrote a book In the Shadow of the Cross, regarding the persecution of the Christian Church throughout the centuries. He comments
This is the kind of serious commitment to which all disciples (of Christ) – including you and me – are called: a readiness to face whatever consequences and costs there may be to following Jesus. This is the criterion for following Jesus in the first place.
So how deep is your religion? Does your religion truly respect Christianity? Does it reflect the good teachings of your religion to embrace the Christ who overcomes everything? When Christ said ‘love your enemies’, does it include people of different religions? Or do other religions claim to love your own and hate others? These questions help us understand the depth of one’s faith in Christ as well as to contemplate the immensity of Christ’s love for other people, even people who hate the Saviour of the World.
Larry Crabb in his book Connecting, mentioned about the depthness of believing (connecting) in the Trinity: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, for healing the brokenness of the human soul. He explains this by saying,
Trinitarianism teaches us that connecting is as vital to the life of our souls as blood is to physical life. When it’s missing, we are ruled by the need to get it. Sometimes we settle for too little. Sometimes we conclude we’ll never find it and become more hollow people, mere shells carrying on our lives in quiet despair.
Bottom line is that whatever religion we take, we end up following a set of rules given to us or dictated by us. Rules, traditionalism, and beliefs give us a sense of temporal security in understanding who we are, where we are going, and what to believe in. Christ came to show us a depthness that religion cannot give. Christ showed us an eternal security that is beyond our wildest imagination and even our temporal pleasures. Christ showed us the Truth, the Way and the Life. When we believe in Christ, then we arrive to what is true. When we try to live according to a religion, then we just trap ourselves into thinking that we are true. There is difference between ‘what is true’ and ‘that we are true.’ Truth cannot be compromised, it always stands, even when error is near or surrounds it. What Truth are you holding on? Is it the Truth? Jesus Christ said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no one comes close to God except through Me.” It’s interesting when someone claims to be Truthful, he was crucified for it!
 Glenn M. Penner, In the Shadow of the Cross: A Biblical Theology of Persecution and Discipleship (Bartlesville, OK: Living Sacrifice Books, 2004), 137 describes the commitment of Christians in the face of intolerance as well as the endurance of standing for the Truth of the cross of Christ in everything.
 Larry Crabb, Connecting: Healing for Ourselves and Our Relationships A Radical New Vision (Orange, California: Word Publishing, 1997), 54 talks about the importance of a community of faith in Christ in order to bring healing for wounded souls, so that people’s lives are changed for the better and renewed because of their encounter with the body of Christ, which is the church.